Helping to reduce backyard lawn mowing injuries

Protect The Family – Before you even start the mower make sure all family members and pets are removed from the mowing area. This will eliminate the chances of having an innocent by-stander injured while mowing the yard.

Rake It Up – Rake up areas prone to debris. Sticks and rocks can flick up from underneath your mower and cause serious harm, so it’s always a good idea to clear your work area before you start.

Protect Your Eyes – 71% of all mower related injuries recorded by the VISU were of the upper extremity, including the face, neck and eyes. Make sure you’re wearing protective eyewear while mowing your lawn just in case a stray stick or rock flies up from under your mower.

No Thongs Allowed – Make sure you are wearing enclosed footwear for all backyard tasks. Wear comfortable shoes that have adequate traction to prevent slipping. And remember when it comes to mowing your lawn; keep the thongs for the beach not the backyard.

Turn It Off – Before you even think about putting your hands near your mower blades, always turn the engine off. It sounds simple, but so many people get it wrong. Every Rover lawn mower comes with an automatic engine break, so when you stop so does your mower.

Take Your Time – Of the 1800 admissions to hospital 76% of all patients were males, with the highest rate between 40-45 years of age. Guys like to get the job done quickly, but safety should be the top priority when you’ve got a high-powered mower at your fingertips. Take your time with the job to minimise risk in the backyard.

Get To Know Your Mower – Knowing how to shut off your mower immediately could be the difference between finishing the job safely and a trip to the hospital. Never leave your mower engine running unattended.

Think First Then Reverse – Especially relevant when using a ride-on, make sure you always look behind before reversing. Being aware of your surroundings reduces the risk of running into obstacles or over debris.

Make Sure It’s Dry – Let that early morning dew dry up before you start on your mowing mission. Mowing on a wet track not only promotes grass sticking to your mower blades, it vastly increases your chances of slipping and injuring yourself.

Cool Down – When you’re looking to refuel, make sure your mower has been turned off and wait at least a few minutes. This will give yourself and the engine some time to cool before you continue the job.

Use Caution On The Slopes – Contrary to popular belief, VISU recorded 93% of all mower related injuries were from walk behind mowers, not ride-ons. To ensure safety in the backyard, never mow up and down a slope with a push mower, always mow across the slope. This is the opposite if you’re using a ride-on, as they can tip over when riding across a slope.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS: Victorian injury Surveillance Unit (VISU), Monash University. Victorian Admitted Episodes Dataset (VAED): hospital admissions, July 2003 – June 2013. Over the ten year period 2003/04 to 2012/13 there were 1,800 hospital admissions and at least a further 2,935 non-admitted presentations to emergency departments in Victoria due to lawn-mowing related injury.